The detox process during rehab is the first difficult step toward recovery. Opioid addiction is particularly difficult to manage in the initial phases due to the severe symptoms associated with withdrawal. However, the FDA has given the go-ahead on the use of some drugs to manage opioid withdrawal symptoms. Examples of FDA drugs used to reduce opioid cravings and minimize withdrawal symptoms include:
The Role of Suboxone in Medication-Assisted Rehab Program
Suboxone is a popular drug combination that is used to treat opioid addiction. It is a combination of buprenorphine and naloxone. Its mechanism of action is a synergistic action of both active pharmaceutical ingredients. Buprenorphine acts as a partial agonist at the opioid receptors. This means that it binds to a specific subtype of opioid receptors while antagonizing others. Consequently, it causes mild euphoria compared to hard narcotic opioids like cocaine and heroin.
This makes it easy for persons struggling with opioid substance disorder to slowly wean off as opposed to stopping abruptly allowing the body to slowly adjust and recover from addiction. On the other hand, naloxone acts as an antagonist. This means that it binds to the opioid receptor blocking other agonists from binding. Note that, unlike buprenorphine, naloxone does not elicit euphoria. Therefore, it is a useful agent for people who suffer from an opioid overdose.
The severity of withdrawal symptoms depends on:
- Which drug was being used?
- How long the addict has been taking the said drug
- The frequency of consumption
- History of other substance use disorders
As a rule of thumb, opioids being a narcotic often elicits severe withdrawal symptoms that can be fatal. The severity is worsened if the addict has been on the drug for long periods, or if the frequency of use is high. Common opioid withdrawal symptoms include:
- Anxiety and lack of sleep
- Sweating and heart palpitations
- Abdominal cramping and diarrhea
- Nausea and vomiting
Although suboxone has proven instrumental in alleviating withdrawal symptoms, it is also seen to have similar side effects, only that the symptoms caused by suboxone are milder. Some of its side effects are:
- Flu-like symptoms like sneezing and runny nose
- Back pain
- Mild abdominal cramping
- Mild nausea and vomiting
For opioid detox, physicians recommend medication-assisted treatment with suboxone under strict supervision. Professional medical help will ease the process, ensure your safety, and make withdrawal more manageable. When Suboxone is used in detox, it is known as opioid replacement therapy (ORT). ORT, just like the name states is a form of therapy where one opioid, for example, heroin or cocaine that is known to cause addiction is replaced with another opioid with milder effects to wean off the addict.
Suboxone Drug Forms
Suboxone is available as pills or strips. The pills are orally taken or placed sublingually under the tongue. Suboxone is a prescription-only drug whose dosage and frequency need to be closely monitored. void buying suboxone from unlicensed vendors or purchasing it from the street as it may be laced with other opioids and the outcome may become counterproductive. The duration of treatment with suboxone varies and only a physician can correctly prescribe suboxone.
Close monitoring by a physician is of paramount importance because the wrong dosage or a combination of suboxone with other neural-depressive drugs like benzos may cause respiratory depression. Additionally, suboxone is just as addictive as other opioid drugs, thus gradual tapering of the dose is crucial in opioid addiction management. Suboxone is ideal in:
- Heroin, Crack, or Cocaine addiction
- Prescription drugs addiction
- Fentanyl addiction
The success of opioid replacement therapy with suboxone increases tremendously if it is coupled with other treatment methods like:
- Individual psychological counselling
- Group therapy
- Cognitive behavioral therapy
- Contingency management
Whether you choose an inpatient or outpatient program, you must ensure that the rehab facility is accredited by the relevant authorities. It is also important to select an evidence-based program like suboxone medication-assisted therapy. Ready to start your journey, contact us at 844-639-8371.